AIIMS Hospital New Delhi made a breakthrough on Tuesday night after dealing with a significant cyber intrusion. A cyber security incident last week resulted in the hacking of the hospital’s primary and backup servers, resulting in the loss of data from e-hospital software that had become obsolete.
Although the digital services at AIIMS will take a few days to restart due to the institute’s ongoing sanitization effort on all computer systems and networks. The hospital’s services, including outpatient, inpatient, and laboratory services, will continue to operate manually until then.
“The e-Hospital data on the servers has been restored.” Before services can be resumed, the network is to be sanitised. Due to the volume of data and the vast number of servers and computers used for medical services, the procedure takes some time. “Measures for cyber security are being implemented,” the institution stated in a statement.
According to sources, the institute’s data restoration claim came after a meeting in the evening between officials from the Union Home Ministry and the National Investigative Agency (NIA) regarding the AIIMS incident.
Meanwhile, internal sources called the claim by AIIMS a mere “face-saving” technique. “Only two options are presented in ransomware attacks—either agree to the demand raised by the hacker or initiate an alternative to the service affected by ransomware,” a senior IT official who is privy to the development said. Reportedly, the hacker has demanded Rs 200 crore for the data of 4 crore patients held at ransom.
However, the Delhi Police, who is also investigating the cyber attack event, refuted media reports regarding the hacker’s ransom demand. When contacted, AIIMS provided no more information on the data restoration promise.
Meanwhile, the institute has requested its teachers, staff, and other members who use the AIIMS intranet to install a special antivirus program called SEQRITE ENDPOINT in order to combat the cyber security threat, according to sources.
Cyber attacks reported on November 23 caused the hospital to shut down all digital services related to patient care.